Biomedical research (Tokyo, Japan)

Influence of prostaglandin A2 and 2-methoxyestradiol on Bax and Bcl-2 expression levels in cervical carcinoma cells.

PMID 15889622


Proteins of the Bcl-2 family are key regulators of apoptosis. Bax can be regarded as pro-apoptotic, whereas Bcl-2 is perceived as anti-apoptotic. It has been proposed that an increased ratio of pro-apoptotic Bax to anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 can be associated with apoptosis. Since prostaglandin A2 (PGA2) and 2-methoxyestradiol (2-ME) play an active role in the induction of apoptosis, the influence of 20 microg/ml PGA2 and 1 microM 2-ME was investigated on Bax and Bcl-2 expression levels in cervical carcinoma cells. Both PGA2 and 2-ME exposure led to statistically significant increases in Bax expression levels. Cells were shown to be more susceptible to the effects of 2-ME than to the effects caused by PGA2. In contrast, no statistically significant effects were observed on Bcl-2 expression levels after exposure to PGA2 and 2-ME. The Bax/Bcl-2 ratios for PGA2- and 2-ME-exposed cells were 2.06 and 1.87 respectively, normalised against Bcl-2 levels. Further investigation of the function and regulation of the Bcl-2 family will allow researchers to consider potential pathways of apoptosis signaling mechanisms for diseases where apoptosis can potentially be controlled.